Widescreen Review Webzine | HD DVD Review | Constantine

BLU-RAY REVIEW

Constantine

Featured In Issue 111, August 2006

Picture5
SoundNA
WSR Score4
Basic Information on new release titles is posted as soon as titles are announced. Once reviewed, additional data is added to the database.
(Studio/Distributor):
Warner Home Video
(Catalog Number):
80927
(MPAA Rating):
R
(Rating Reason):
For violence and demonic images.
(Retail Price):
$28.99
(Disc Type):
Single Side, Dual Layer (HD-30)
(Widescreen Edition):
Yes
(Full Screen Edition):
No
(Running Time In Minutes):
121
(Color Type):
Color
(Chaptered/Scene Access):
Yes
(Closed Captioned):
Yes
(Regional Coding):
1
(Theatrical Year):
2005
(Theatrical Release):
Yes
(Direct-To-Video Release):
No
(Disc Release Date):
06/06/06
(THX® Digitally Mastered):
No
(Director):
Francis Lawrence
(Screenplay/Written By):
(Story):
(Music):
(Director Of Photography):
(Production Designer):
(Visual Effects):
(Costume Designer):
(Editor):
(Supervising Sound Editors):
(Re-Recording Mixers):
(Executive Producers):
(Co-Producers):
(Producers):
(Academy Awards):
(Principal Photography):
(Theatrical Aspect Ratio):
(Measured Disc Aspect Ratio):
(Disc Soundtrack):
Dolby TrueHD 5.1, Dolby Digital+ 5.1
(Theatrical Sound):
(Theatrical Re-Issue Soundtrack):
(DTS Bit Rate):
(Dolby Digital Bit Rate):
(Additional Languages):
(French Language):
(Spanish Language):
(Chinese Language):
(Subtitles):
(Cantonese Language):
(Mandarin Language):
(Japanese Language):
(Italian Language):
(German Language):
(Portuguese Language):

John Constantine (Reeves) is a hellblazing, hellraising hunter of demons. With a lovely and brave cop (Weisz) by his side, he faces off against otherworldly foes in an apocalyptic war. Based on the characters from the DC Comics/Vertigo Hellblazer graphic novels.

Includes all of the same features as the previously released DVD—audio commentary, a music video for "Passive" by A Perfect Circle, and two trailers. Also, the 16-minute Conjuring Constantine featurette, which explains how the character came to be in the comic; three featurettes in "The Production From Hell" menu selection that cover The Director's Confessional with Francis Lawrence, Collision With Evil, and Holy Relics; and four featurettes that explain Imagining The Underworld (Hellscape, Visualizing Vermin, Warrior Wings, and Unholy Abduction). Constantine's Cosmology is a five-minute featurette that discusses heroes in mythic stories. There is also a previsualization featurette with optional commentary, 13 deleted scenes and an alternate ending with optional commentary, and DVD-ROM content.

The high-definition HD DVD picture, framed at 2.40:1, is nicely stylized with varying color schemes and saturation to give an edgy and supernatural appearance to the story. In a sense, sometimes the picture almost has an "ashy" quality, which, of course, complements the theme of hell on Earth. Black levels are so incredibly deep, that it is imperative to view this title in a completely blackened viewing environment to appreciate the stunning depth. While some imagery still appears slightly smeared, images are impressively sharp and detailed. VC-1 compression is nicely done, with little pixel breakup to be noticed. (Suzanne Hodges)

The great dynamics and well recorded dialogue shine in the Dolby Digital Plus encoding, creating a much more realistic environment than was ever possible before. Bass is well defined, with an impressive foundation provided by the LFE channel, which is mimicked in each of the full range channels at times. Dialogue becomes crystal clear with very good articulation using Dolby's new codec, and the low level effects are delivered with even more detail than the previous encoding. While imaging in the surrounds is still slightly diffuse, there is a noticeable increase in definition with the higher bit rates and more effective compression. Although we currently only have the ability to decode two channels of the included Dolby TrueHD encoding of the soundtrack, there is a noticeable increase in fidelity in this track, even over the Dolby Digital Plus version. It has me looking forward to the time when we will be able to decode the full 5.1-channel stream. (Danny Richelieu)